Week 7 Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: Burks, Gibson, Ross

Alec Burks

Nov 11, 2013; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Utah Jazz point guard Alec Burks (10) controls the ball while defended by Denver Nuggets shooting guard Randy Foye (4) during the first half at EnergySolutions Arena. Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

In fantasy football, hot waiver wire pickups are gone immediately. In fantasy basketball, a lot of very serviceable free agents float around the waiver wire for weeks. Some of our top waiver wire pickups are making their third or fourth appearance in this column which means a) they have been getting it done and not simply on a hot streak and b) they remain unowned in at least half of fantasy leagues. Let’s take a look at some waiver wire frequent flyers and some new faces worth a pickup for Week 7.

Alec Burks (Owned in 19 percent of Yahoo leagues): The third-year guard started out great but struggled with consistency after a couple of weeks. He’s back in form now and should be on everyone’s fantasy radar. Over his last six games, Burks is averaging 16 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and a three-pointer per game while shooting a solid 47 percent from the floor and 66.7 percent from downtown. He’s also being utilized more, averaging 30 minutes per game over those six games.

Taj Gibson (41 percent): Gibson earned a start on Saturday in place of Luol Deng but was worthy of a pickup regardless. Over his last five games, Gibson is averaging 21.4 points, 8.4 rebounds, 1.6 blocks, and shooting 61 percent from the floor. That production is unsustainable but he keeps getting the opportunities so ride this streak out for all it’s worth.

Terrence Ross (4 percent): With Rudy Gay moving to Sacramento, Ross figures to be in line to be the new starting forward for the Raptors. The former eighth-overall pick has been used inconsistently all season but is averaging a passable 12.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, two three-pointers, and a steal 36 minutes. Gay took a ton of shots so there will be plenty of chances to go around as Toronto moves on without him, Ross is definitely worth a speculative add.

John Henson (50 percent): Henson has been on the waiver wire rundown weekly but is still available in half of Yahoo leagues. You’re missing out. Henson has been stellar since moving into the starting lineup, averaging 14.6 points, 10.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and nearly two blocks per game over his last five while shooting 52 percent from the floor. Pick him up. Start him. Revel in fantasy gold.

Kosta Koufos (35 percent): Koufos is like a poor man’s John Henson and turns some fantasy owners off because he doesn’t score much. He’s been getting a ton of minutes with Marc Gasol out, though, and is a great source of rebounds, blocks, and steals until the Grizzlies’ big man returns. In six games since replacing Gasol in the lineup, Koufos is averaging 11 points, 12.3 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, and 1.2 steals per game. That’s right around what his stat line looks every night and it’s a good fit for any fantasy roster.

Al-Farouq Aminu (16 percent): With Anthony Davis out, Aminu has seen a big increase from his 20 minute per game role. Over three games since Davis went down, Aminu is averaging 36.5 minutes, 12.3 points, 13 rebounds, and 2.0 steals per game. He’s not a great shooter but he is a beast on defense and should still have double-digit points most nights when he plays 30+ minutes.

Terrence Jones (48 percent): Jones has been mentioned in this column often as the first-year starter continues to come into his own in place of Omer Asik. In 14 games as a starter this season, Jones is averaging 12.7 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.8 blocks, and shooting 52 percent from the floor. He’s finally back to playing 30+ minutes per game and is averaging 16 points, 11.5 rebounds, 4.0 blocks, and 2.5 steals over his last two games so he’s worth a pickup everywhere.

Ben McLemore (51 percent): The rookie from Kansas is proving he’s no slouch, putting up double-digit points in five of his last six games. Over the stretch, the seventh-overall pick in this year’s draft is averaging 13.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.5 steals, and 1.8 three-pointers per game. He’s a rookie and is shooting 38 percent over those games so he’s a risk but his ability makes him worth a grab in 12+ team leagues.

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Igor Derysh is Editor-at-Large at XN Sports and has been featured in The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Herald, Baltimore Sun, Orlando Sun-Sentinel, and FantasyPros. He has previously covered sports for COED Magazine, Fantasy Alarm, and Manwall.com.
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